Anyone making his or her living in a creative field including VO, especially those who might be lacking in business or marketing skills, would be wise to read Al Ries and Jack Trout’s groundbreaking books The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing (Violate Them at Your Own Risk!) and Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind. I would make a strong argument that they would also be well-served by viewing the cinematic masterpiece Talladega Nights: The Legend of Ricky Bobby. Since I’m pretty sure they’re being mentioned in the same breath for the very first time, you’re probably wondering what they have in common.
Both of Ries and Trout’s books revolve around a common theme, one familiar with folks who have populated the P2P sites over the years. As it applies to voice talent, you could have golden tones and deliver the perfect read every time, but if you’re the 100th audition out of 114, chances are that audition will never be heard. That has changed somewhat with several of the major sites recently, but the fact remains being first, or among the first, greatly enhances your chances of landing the gig. Ricky Bobby’s father, Reese, reinforces the importance of being first in a poignant scene early in Talladega Nights…………..
ACX has been a hot topic in the VO world recently. There seems to be more work available than folks available to narrate, but promptness in getting auditions to the ears of the rights holders still appears to be a huge advantage in landing the gig. This is where being first has benefitted me tremendously over the past few weeks. I’ve signed on to do 4 audiobooks over the course of about 2 weeks. In at least 3 of those cases, the offer came within 24 hours of the title being posted and, subsequently, my audition being received. I also had at least 2 rights holders/authors tell me my audition was the first one they received. They had others behind me and they listened to several, but clearly there is sufficient non-scientific evidence that tells you being first, or among the first, on ACX auditions can provide a nice income stream.
Your mileage may vary, and on the flip side, there are many titles for which I’ve sent auditions months ago that never followed up on actually choosing a narrator. You’ll get a definite advantage there, however, if you check it about once or twice a day and send auditions promptly, there’s a steady stream of work in it for you.
If you’re not first on ACX, you could be last.